Friday, 9 March 2018

Yesterday I drove to Devon to see a very dear friend of mine, Jaine Drinkwater,  who very sadly has Motor Neurone disease, I had last visited her just over a year ago and wasn't looking forward to seeing how much she had deteriorated, being the nature of the disease. However, I was pleasantly surprised how well she looked. She has now lost the ability to move and struggles to speak but her and her husband Bob, who is now her full time carer were just fabulous fun and were able to laugh at all the huge hurdles they are now faced with. They were also full of praise for the NHS who have been incredible with their support. Her house is kitted out with all the latest eye tracking technology and as well as communicating she can control all the household appliances with her eyes.  It was a truly inspirational visit and they both made me feel very humble with the amazing way they are coping with what would be most people's worst nightmare. It certainly puts everything into perspective..... 

We are all thawed out now and the ground is really soggy but it is good to get all the horses out and give them some proper work. Tomorrow we are running Glory Hunter in the Intermediate, Don't Budge Me in the restricted and Beech Hill in the maiden at the rescheduled meeting at Didmarton. The ground will be too soft for Budge but it will be good for Nathan to get a feel for him, but the other two should like the conditions.  We are celebrating with the Aprahamian's tonight as Billy, their son has just won the Grand Military Cup at Sandown on a Nicky Henderson horse, called Baden. Nathan, our other novice rider, also rode in the same race and did really well to come sixth on a 100-1 shot.
Billy was our novice rider three years ago and had his first winner with us - When he first came Peter Mann used to take the mickey out of him as he said he rode like a policeman sitting on a pole!  However, Billy was a fantastic learner and absorbed everything he was taught and is a seriously good jockey now. Well done Billy!
Billy Aprahamian on Baden at Sandown